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FYI: The city’s health department is joining a day of events planned in 100 cities around the country today to mark the first National Latino AIDS Awareness Day. Nationally, Latinos account for a fifth of new HIV infections every year and AIDS is the fourth largest killer among 25 to 44 year olds in the community. The city health department said 25,000 Latinos are known to be living with HIV or AIDS in New York City, but suspects thousands more are unknowingly positive. Later this month, the department will launch a mass advertising campaign to promote HIV testing and to implore those who have recently tested positive to help prevent further spreading of the virus. Earlier this year, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention drew criticism when it also focused its HIV prevention work on people who have newly tested positive. Advocates worry that such a focus undermines efforts to convince entire communities that they must confront the epidemic, rather than considering it a problem for those who are already infected or are in certain “risk groups” to deal with. [10/15/03]

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